A guide to children’s early learning and development

A guide to children’s early learning and development

The first five years are vital for your child’s learning and development. Their brains are growing and making connections at a rapid pace. Every experience a child has during this period helps to shape their future.

An overview of early development

Your child’s early learning can be broken down into several key areas.

Physical development: your child getting bigger and stronger, developing gross and fine motor skills and becoming more coordinated.

Cognitive development: your child gaining knowledge and starting to understand the world around them, including learning to think, remember, solve problems and pay attention.

Social and emotional development: encompassing everything from developing a sense of self to forming relationships.

The importance of play in early development

Children are like sponges, absorbing everything around them, and they learn best through play.

Play helps children:

  • Develop their physical skills.
  • Develop their imagination and creativity.
  • Express their emotions.
  • Make friends and socialise with other children.
  • Learn how to communicate with others.

There are many types of play, including active play, imaginative play, constructive play and social play.

Children learn best through play because they’re engaged in the learning process. When children are playing, they’re making sense of the world around them and trying out new ideas and ways of doing things. When children play freely, they will often surprise you with their creativity and imagination.

How to support your child’s early learning

There are many ways parents can support their child’s learning in the early years. Here are five suggestions.

  1. Encourage exploration: Create a safe and stimulating environment for your child to explore. This could include providing toys and materials suitable for their age and developmental stage.
  2. Foster positive relationships: Provide opportunities for your child to interact with other children and adults positively. This could include reading stories together, singing songs or playing games.
  3. Model desired behaviours: Be a role model for your child by demonstrating the behaviours you would like them to learn, such as sharing, taking turns and being caring towards others.
  4. Encourage communication: Support your child’s communication development by talking with them often, listening to them and helping them understand words and concepts.
  5. Provide opportunities to learn: Offer opportunities for your child to learn through everyday experiences, such as cooking, shopping and doing household tasks together.

Childcare and kindergarten’s role

Childcare and kindergarten play an important role in supporting your child’s early learning. High-quality childcare and early education programs provide a safe, stimulating environment for your child to learn through play. They also offer opportunities for socialisation and help children develop important skills, such as communication, problem-solving and self-regulation.

The early years are a critical time for learning and development. By working together, parents, childcare providers and educators can give children the best possible starts in life. To discover how Learning Ladder’s educational program can support your child’s early learning and development, please contact us today.


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